Boosted by the enormous amount of weaponry captured at Regiment 121 just more than a week ago, fighters of the Islamic State took on another stronghold of the Pro-Assadists in Nothern Syria, Brigade 93. This base was the last remaining non-airbase stronghold of the Pro-Assadists in this region.
BM-21s captured at Regiment 121 were used to attack Brigade 93 before the main assault begun, reportedly setting it ablaze. The base was then attacked by three trucks filled with explosives, clearing a path for the fighters storming the base. During the following attack around ninety fighters of the Islamic State are believed to have died along with around three-hundred Pro-Assadists and another hundred captured. Only a few have been able to evade capture by the Islamic State, with most of the fleeing personnel surrendering in the desert.
Apart from Brigade 93, Kweres airbase has seen increased shelling, and is without a doubt the next target of the Islamic State.
Before the revolution, Brigade 93 was home to around fity tanks, seventeen howitzers, numerous anti-aircraft guns, countless trucks and various other armoured fighting vehicles. Although some of this equipment may have been distributed to other bases, most was still believed to have been present on the base during the attack.
Footage and images of fighters of the Islamic State in the base shows at thirty T-55s, two BRDM-2s, ten 122mm D-30 howitzer and one 130mm M-46 field-gun captured.
The Islamic State also captured on of its first self-propelled anti-aircraft guns (SPAAGs). Althugh originally designed to attack air targets, the four 23mm guns of the ZSU-23 are often used against ground targets. Yet transferring the system to the Iraqi battlefield would pose a serious threat to the Iraqi Air Force (IQAF), which has no means of defending its choppers against the radar guided ZSU-23.
The two remaining Pro-Assadists strongholds in Nothern Syria, Kweres airbase and Tabqa airbase are obviously next on the list. The first was the main training base of the Syrian Arab Air Force before the revolution, housing three squadrons worth of MBB-SIAT 223K1 Flamingos, PAC MFI-17 Mushshaks, Mi-2s and L-39s.
With most planes on the base already been destroyed or damaged beyond repair by the constant shelling of the base, and with the Islamic State seemingly not interested in working on any of the L-39s captured at Kshesh (Jirah) given they're still operational, the chances of seeing the Islamic State operating planes or helicopters in the near future remain small.
Tabqa airbase is home to at least two squadrons operating MiG-21s and has provided most of the air support for Pro-Assadists in the North. Although operating captured MiG-21s might be a step too far, Tabqa also houses numerous radars and anti-aircraft guns, an interesting booty for the Islamic State.
The spoils of Regiment 121, captured by the Islamic State